The Economic Impact of the Affordable Housing Credit


In addition to ensuring the supply of affordable rental housing, the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) supports jobs and provides benefits to the economy. Using the NAHB economic impact model of home building, revised industry estimates reveal that the LIHTC program supports almost 96,000 jobs in a typical year.

NAHB recently updated its economic impact model of home building, which indicate that for every 1,000 rental apartments developed approximately 1,130 jobs are supported for a year. Approximately 60% of those jobs are in the construction sector, with the remaining in associated industries such as manufacturing, transportation, and business services.

To estimate the typical annual economic benefits of the LIHTC program, we used average unit allocation totals from 2008 to 2012 from the National Council of State Housing Agencies Factbook data source to calculate industry activity totals. Newly built units were estimated using the NAHB apartment economic impact model, while substantial rehabilitation and acquisition/rehabilitation unit impacts were estimated using the remodeling part of the model on aggregate dollar basis.

The final estimates indicate that for a typical year, annual LIHTC development activity supports approximately:

  • 95,700 jobs
  • $3.5 billion in federal, state and local taxes paid
  • $9.1 billion in economic income (wages and business income)

These numbers illustrate the economic benefits of the development activity associated with the program, in addition to its primary role of providing safe, decent and affordable housing.

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